Iron Buggy Company opens along High Street
Looking to make his fortune, entrepreneur C.D. Firestone opens a small buggy production facility. It’s soon renamed Columbus Buggy Company, and it grows into the largest such business in the world. More than two dozen competitors open by 1900, and Columbus is christened the “Buggy Capital of the World.”
North End Market opens
The public food hub is launched at 29 Spruce St. — site of an old cemetery — and begins a long, intriguing history. It burns down in 1948, reopens in a Quonset hut and gains a national reputation in the ’80s. It’s eventually renamed the North Market.
Professor Mendenhall calls his students
Thomas Mendenhall and his Ohio State students install the state’s first telephone line. It runs from his laboratory to his living quarters on High Street.
Clarence Darrow passes the bar … kind of
The famous lawyer from Kinsman travels to Columbus to take the bar exam on a Monday, but gets drunk and wakes up on Tuesday. However, the man he meets and charms during his bender is his test proctor, who declares Darrow a lawyer in good standing on the spot.
Columbus Gallery of Fine Arts registers charter
The pioneering Columbus gallery, later to become the Columbus Museum of Art, is the first museum in Ohio to register with the state. It blossoms into a pioneering arts organization.
Columbus Art School founded
The school is founded as an adjunct to the Columbus Gallery of Fine Arts and hosts its first classes in a building near North High and Long streets. It adopts the name Columbus College of Art & Design in 1959 and becomes independent of the museum in 1981.
James Poindexter elected
The abolitionist and politician becomes the first black candidate elected to the Columbus City Council. In 1940, Poindexter Village — one of the first federal metropolitan housing projects — is named in his honor.
Entertainment abounds at Comstock’s Opera House
Located on High Street, this venue hosts lectures, plays, operas, readings and other performances. Oscar Wilde discusses art in 1882, and Mark Twain reads from “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” in 1885. Comstock’s perishes in an 1892 fire.
George Bellows born
The city’s most celebrated painter is born on Aug. 19 (or Aug. 12, according to some sources). He later attends Ohio State and chooses to pursue art in New York City instead of playing pro baseball.
Ed “Dummy” Dundon enters the majors
Dundon, a pitcher, is the first pro baseball player from Columbus. Because he’s deaf, he’s unable to hear calls of “ball” or “strike” at the plate. Umpires adopt special hand signals that become a permanent part of the game.
J. Fred Schmidt opens meat-packing plant south of Downtown
The German immigrant gains local and regional acclaim for sausages, wursts and other meats. In 1967, his grandson opens the Schmidt’s Sausage Haus restaurant around the corner from the plant.
Nation’s first concession stand opens at Recreation Park II
Entrepreneur Harry Stevens acquires rights to sell mid-game snacks at the ballpark located in German Village. Among his menu items: Vidalia onions and tripe.
Arches erected Downtown
Wooden arches with gas lights emerge Downtown, and they dazzle roughly 300,000 visitors during an event commemorating the creation of the Northwest Territory. Columbus earns the nickname “Arch City.”
Electric streetcars come to Columbus
Units operated by the Glenwood and Greenlawn Street Railway Company begin running along West Broad Street. Replacing horse-drawn cars, this upgraded system of mass transit knits together many Columbus neighborhoods. However, buses and trolley coaches replace all streetcars by 1948.
Ohio State plays first home football game
Though primarily a baseball facility, Recreation Park II in German Village hosts OSU football’s first home game. On Nov. 1, the hometown heroes lose to Wooster, 64-0.
Era of interurban rail dawns in Central Ohio
The first local line is the Columbus and Westerville Railway. For roughly 40 years, fast railcars known as interurbans link Columbus with burgeoning cities like Urbana, Newark and Grove City.
James Thurber born
On Dec. 8, one of America’s greatest humorists is born Downtown. In 1927, Thurber begins working as an editor at The New Yorker, where his cartoons and stories reach millions.
Daniel Burnham designs city’s first skyscraper
Complete with 11 floors, the Wyandotte Building carves out the first piece of the Columbus skyline. One of two local buildings designed by the renowned Chicago architect, it costs $200,000 to construct and is occupied initially by state workers.
Franklin County’s first amusement park opens
Minerva Park celebrates the first of seven summers with gardens, a water slide called Shoot the Chutes, the Scenic Railway roller coaster, a bird museum, swimming, boating, baseball and other attractions.
Palm House built at Franklin Park
Modeled after the Glass Palace at the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago, the windowed structure is an early Columbus landmark.